12 cool Pakistani women to follow on Instagram
...and you thought the secluded place didn't have empowered women. *eye-roll*
By now, we know better than to simply reduce Pakistan to a hostile state that harbours terrorists and seriously stylish women. We keep hearing of a highly talented art community, a flourishing fashion scene and hundreds of inspiring women working towards empowerment, and some of them create disruptive content on Instagram while they’re at it. This social media platform has managed to capture the beauty of our neighbouring country via narratives so unique, you’ll never see it the same way again. We scoured Instagram to find some of the coolest Pakistani women to follow on Instagram.
Prepare to be inspired.
1. Khatoon Art Society
The founder of Khatoon Art Society, Nihan Karim, comes from a small city in Punjab called Gakhar and carefully curates her account from the UK where she is completing her Masters degree. Karim highlights the works of Pakistani female visual artists who depict the female experience ranging from established artists to self-taught illustrators.
2. Komal Naz Khan Khattack
This zany performance artist has an unusually arresting Instagram account. The bright colours, cute outfits, dramatic expressions and kooky photographs are sure to keep you hooked.
3. Maha Minhaj
Recent art school grad Maha Minhaj manages to make the mundane look marvellous as she documents Karachi city life in her carefully curated feed. Her photographs range from city-scrapes to photographs of herself clowning around in front of a mirror, but each and every one of them is equally intriguing.
4. Art Now Pakistan
The past decade has been an extremely important one for Pakistani art. A large number of artists have received critical acclaim world over for providing a strong, fresh perspective on what it means to be a Pakistani in the current age. To keep yourself up to date with anything relevant happening, follow one of the country’s most respected art magazines, ArtNow, an online publication run by founding editor, Fawzia Naqvi.
5. The Style Journal
There is a whole bunch of fashion Instagram bloggers in Pakistan, but The Style Journal is where you hear it first. Blogger Alina Shahid always spots the coolest trends and has the funniest curation of memes.
If you want hilarious commentary along with the latest fashion news, Secret Buyer Pakistan is the one to follow. Plus, she’s really good at spotting fake(r)s – scroll down her feed to see every Pakistani designer that has ever been “inspired” by Sabyasachi.
7. The Pakistani Martha Stewart
A second generation Pakistani Canadian, Saher Sohail addresses desi gender bias, generational gaps and the plight of a Muslim immigrant with hilarious clarity through her illustrations. Follow her to empathize with her journey while cracking up till your stomach hurts.
8. Areeba Siddique
Not only can this girl illustrate like a dream, she regularly draws inspiration from the coolest millennial Muslim terms on the internet, eg: muck boy – the Muslim fuck boy, for her art work.
9. Top Bastard
Sanam Maher is a journalist and writer whose Instagram account is a mix of bizarre stories that make it to newspapers, censored content and her two adorable French bulldogs, Pearl and Finch. Follow this account for some intelligent humour and updates on her upcoming book on Qandeel Baloch.
10. From Karachi with Love
This heartwarming Instagram is the love child of writer Neha Mashooqullah and illustrator Sophia Balagamwala. Any Karachiite will tell you how this account perfectly encapsulates the gritty charm that defines the city of Karachi, a place that millions call home.
11. Muzi Sufi
Photographer, mom, fashionista and lover of color, Muzi Sufi shares her jet setting life on Instagram capturing arresting moments behind the scenes while shooting some of Pakistan’s biggest fashion campaigns.
12. Noorulain Ali
Noorulain and her husband are the most coveted wedding photographer duo in Pakistan. Her own personal Instagram though is an amalgamation of girly loveliness with priceless princess moments from weddings, an obsession with bunnies and travel tales.